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In real estate, a change in a property's value caused by a lessee or another person who has possession but no ownership rights. Waste usually results in a reduction in the property value, for which the owner ordinarily is entitled compensation. Waste may be positive or negative; positive waste results from the possessor's act, while negative waste results from his/her omission. An example of the former is destroying the floor with a sledge hammer, while an example of the latter is neglecting a termite infestation for so long that the floor collapses.


An abusive or destructive use of property by someone who is entitled to possession but who does not have complete ownership rights, such as a tenant, mortgage borrower, or a joint owner.Waste is more than normal wear and tear and implies neglect or misconduct. Contrast with trespass, which is damage by one who is not entitled to possession.There are three types of waste:

1. Voluntary waste (also called affirmative waste) is an intentional change to property resulting in damage to the property.

2. Permissive waste (also called negligent waste) is a failure to maintain property, so that it deteriorates in value.

3. Ameliorative waste occurs when the changes increase the value of the property. In some jurisdictions, a court will still award damages because the owner is entitled to have its property remain in the same condition, without being subjected to others' opinions regarding whether it was improved or not. Other jurisdictions refuse to allow damages, finding that the owner has been benefited by the actions.

References in periodicals archive ?
If this actually happens, it could reverse some of the devastation caused by Thatcher's misrule that laid waste to large areas of the North-east.
But Tshering's home village of Sermathang, north of Kathmandu, is one of the rural communities which has been laid waste by the earthquake.
Islanders have been allowed to shoot greylag geese for the past three years after a booming flock laid waste to farmers' crops.
ANSEONG, SOUTH KOREA -- A massive fire has laid waste to a printed circuit board factory here that was building multilayer boards for Samsung's next-generation smartphone.
Returning to flood-ravaged Britain after our welcome break in Barbados, she quite by chance opened the Good Book to Isaiah and read: "See, the Lord is going to lay waste the earth and devastate it; The earth will be completely laid waste and totally plundered.
Manila, Nov16 (BNA) The devastating typhoon Haiyan which laid waste to much of the central Philippines has claimed to-date 3633 victims.
Christians regard the Bible to be the final answer to any topic that it purports to speak explicitly about, so what was God doing while the tornado laid waste the school?
Those Scandinavian pillagers who laid waste to our nation more than a millennium ago would be proud to know that their spirit lives on - in the form of sports marketing men.
The bizarre tale is set after an apocalyptic plague has laid waste most of the planet.
SUPERSTORM Sandy laid waste to the campaign strategies of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney with just a week remaining in the race for the White House.
In order to prepare for the role Streep had watched videos of Thatcher, spoke to the former PM's colleagues, and had laid waste to Liverpool.
Summary: Mark Cueto and Chris Ashton both scored hat-tricks as England laid waste to the Romanian line-out, marching to a ten-try rout.